Barbara McConochie

I am Principal Oboe in the Brandon Hill Chamber Orchestra. I started learning the oboe at 11 and studied at Royal Academy of Music. After a spell working back in Scotland, I began freelance playing and teaching the oboe in Lancashire. From the orchestra’s inception in 1987 I regularly made the journey to Bristol to play, becoming a Bristolian myself in 2003. The range of musical experiences that bhco has allowed me to enjoy has been both enriching and fulfilling; a personal highlight was the chance to play the Strauss Oboe Concerto conducted by Dougie Boyd (himself an oboist) in 2002. The pleasure and stimulation of meeting and working with new, gifted conductors and soloists cannot be overstated and I rejoice in the opportunities for music making and friendship that we share in the orchestra.

Away from music I completed a degree and had a second career working with hard to reach young people, helping them to engage with work and education. Now I am a person with Parkinson’s involved with the challenges that brings and more important still, an enthusiastic granny to my grandchildren.